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Old 07-12-2008, 20:43   #1
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OK, here goes, I am looking for experienced advice on two questions

1. Has anyone dealt with boatangel ministries in purchasing a sailboat?

2. I am going to be purchasing a 27-30ft fixer-upper. I have good electronics and engine skills and am experienced in fiberglass and wood working as it pertains to furniture making. I am REALLY liking a 1978 Columbia 28'7". How do you feel about this boat being a coastal cruiser and a live aboard for one person?

Thanks to all,
Barry
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Old 07-12-2008, 20:50   #2
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Small for living aboard even for one person. Have you been physically on the boat? If you have ask yourself this, where on that boat will you store everything you own and need to live aboard? If you can answer that and there is no structural issues it will probably be OK for coastal cruising. But, will you need to live aboard while you do all of the work the boat needs and do you want to? Food for thought.
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Old 07-12-2008, 21:06   #3
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Recently divorced, don't own anything to my name any more :-)
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Old 07-12-2008, 21:11   #4
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Been there done that, several times. I love my boat! Man do you meet alot of single guys on boats, wonder why?
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Old 07-12-2008, 21:23   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bclark2 View Post
OK, here goes, I am looking for experienced advice on two questions

1. Has anyone dealt with boatangel ministries in purchasing a sailboat?

2. I am going to be purchasing a 27-30ft fixer-upper. I have good electronics and engine skills and am experienced in fiberglass and wood working as it pertains to furniture making. I am REALLY liking a 1978 Columbia 28'7". How do you feel about this boat being a coastal cruiser and a live aboard for one person?

Thanks to all,
Barry
Welllllll, it sounds like you have a good back ground for a boat owner but you may want to choose a better quality of boat.

1) No matter how much you put into it (Columbia), it's resale value will always be low. Unless you don't care about squandering away some money on experience. Or you plan to keep this the rest of your life.

2) If you could live in a 20' trailer a 29' sailboat should be OK, by yourself.

Boatangel? I haven't heard of them. What is your location, which brings up another thought.

Depending on your location will determine the comfort of your living space. In colder climates boats under 30' can be miserable. No heat, no hot water, clothes begin to smell from lack of circulation and so on.

Have you ever been to sea in rough weather? We would need more info!
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Old 07-12-2008, 21:30   #6
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Hi Barry,

First let me warn you. Do not expect common sense advice on this forum. We are confirmed boat nuts and will encourage you to go for it, but you will get good advice on avoiding pitfalls you might encounter on the way.

Sounds like you have the right skills for a fixer upper but one or two things can make an older boat not worth repairing. Most decks are make with plywood or other material sandwiched between two layers of glass. If the core is wet and rotten it will probably take more time and moeny to repair than the boat is worth. Even for a cheap fixer upper it would be worth paying a good surveyor to check it out. Of course you can always get back on the forum and ask more questions.

Regarding the size for liveaboards, I was in Haiti many years back and ran into two German couples living on a 27' boat that they had sailed over from Europe. I guess it just gets down to individual tastes and tolerance but I think for four people to live together on a 27 footer for several months they would have to be very good friends.
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Old 07-12-2008, 22:51   #7
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I have never dealt with boatangel ministries. But from what I understand and at times that ain't much. They take donated boats and sell them. Like giving your old car to Goodwill. I am sure some are nice but would assume that most are donated because they wont sell, have problems, or have to be moved because you cant sell them, or what ever. Like anything else you have to look at it. But would assume it to be sold, as is and where is.
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Old 08-12-2008, 03:16   #8
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Barry
I'd go for a bigger boat if the $gods alow...you may not have anything now but that will change once you own a fixer upper.
If your going to go all out with the "fixin-up" then start with something solid enough to be worthy of the blood, sweat and tears...not to mention the$$
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Old 08-12-2008, 06:49   #9
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pirate Thanks to all

Great advice all! I have been in contact with the seller and as soon as I started asking about the decking he started back paddling. I have put the Columbia on hold while I look around a little more. If I go up to a 32-36ft I'm going to have to save some more pennies but I think it might be worth it. I actually lived on board a de-masted 41ft Formosa Ketch back in the early 90's in Guam for about 6 months (that is when the sailing bug hit me, even though that particular boat never sailed) and was judging my needs based on that experience. I am currently in TN so there aren't many options to go look at sailboats around here. Have done some sailing as a hand in Gulf though and am looking to port in the panhandle area (between Destin and Tampa)
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Old 08-12-2008, 07:04   #10
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Id look at one of the hurricane damaged boats being sold cheap in Texas. With your skills, you could fix one up. The trick is to negotiate an affordable deal with a boatyard to let you live on the boat there while you are working on it.

You will also start to see plenty of bank repossessions. You can get a good deal on one of these as well, although repossessed items tend to have plenty of deferred maintenance.
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Old 08-12-2008, 07:12   #11
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Hey Barry....I was on Guam in the early 80s living on Arctic Lady at the old yacht club and in Peddi back bay.
Did you ever do the Atlants sub thing....if so maybe you know Bob and Audrey?
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Old 08-12-2008, 08:03   #12
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With your skills, you may be happiest looking at boats from the early 70's or even late sixties. In those days, good builders molded a really thick uncored hull (since no one was really too sure about this new fiberglass stuff) and then "stick built" everything inside the hull. Everything unscrews! It was only later on that they started using cores, fiberglass liners, and tricky engineering which are much harder to repair.

Boats I would look at at Sabre 28, Shannon 28, anything from Cape Dory, Bristol, Tartan, Alberg 30, Triton, maybe Pearson. There are others I can't think of right now. These will be more expensive than a Columbia but if you're patient you'll find one. You only need to get lucky once. I also think you'd be happier putting all of the effort into a slightly bigger boat although Sabre or Shannon 28s are surprisingly big feeling boats.

Don't buy anything without talking with folks at the boat's owners group (and if there's no owners group you don't want the boat). They'll provide free advice that will be invaluable.

Don't buy anything that's ever sunk (even "partially sunk") or had a fire.

Besides the obvious candidates on Ebay, I'd drive around to boat yards. In most of the country boat yards are pretty lonely places at this time of year. Someone with cash in their hand (even a very little cash) doesn't have much competition. Buy the yard manager lunch and see if he has any thoughts for you.

Carl
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Old 08-12-2008, 08:11   #13
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Great advice carl.

bclark2 - Welcome to CF. It's great you have the passion. My only advoce, and this is not discouragement, is make sure you have the cash to keep pushing forward. Also if this is going to be the place you live "while" you fix it up, it's even tougher.

There is an Aussie guy who posts here once in a while who moved onto his boat while it was under construction. Hell of a story. Use the search function for Yacht Rodney.

Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 08-12-2008, 08:37   #14
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Shannon 28s are great boats, but not cheap. Even if the boat is only in fair condition, you'll pay $40,000 or more.

If I were going to be living aboard, I'd want something bigger and cheaper. See the listings below. But I agree with CarlF that if the boat has sunk, stay away. I looked at one boat that had some interior water damage that had been very nicely and professionally repaired, but the insurance co. wouldn't touch it at standard rates.

1976 C.T. ketch Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

1979 Trident Voyager Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

1979 Tayana Vancouver 42 Cutter Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com

1979 Pearson 365 Sloop Sail Boat For Sale - www.yachtworld.com
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Old 08-12-2008, 09:19   #15
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Barry,

That Trident Voyager Curmudgeon found looks really interesting. Those were well built boats. I once sailed on one in the UK. The pilothouse would make it a joy to live on. Because it's a British boat there's not much market in the US (especially for a fixer-upper). Look on yachtworld.com at some of the boats for sale in Europe. It would be a bunch of work, but she could clean up real nice.

Carl
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